‘King of the Nerds’ exclusive: Lily Rutledge-Ellison on final four appearance, cosplay, and more

Lily -As we’ve said a few times now in publishing these “King of the Nerds” finale exit interviews, it’s an achievement anytime you make it all the way to the final four. While Lily may have come up short in the end when it comes to the trivia challenge, she made a lasting mark as one of the best costume designers (and Stratego players) Nerdvana has ever seen. Also, she seemed to have a very good time simply being a part of the show this season.

We recently asked Lily a few questions via email about her overall experience, the memorable cosplay challenge from earlier in the season, and whether or not she was still sick while trying to answer trivia near the end of the game. As you remember back during episode 7, that was one of the things she was most concerned about going into the Stratego showdown with Raychelle.

CarterMatt – When you were facing off against Raychelle, you were clearly pretty sick. Was that better by the time you did the final four challenge?

Lily – If you listen to my nose at times you’ll hear that I was not entirely cured. I definitely felt much better though. No more puking, and a lot more breathing .

Is it frustrating to go out so soon to the final two, or is it somewhat of a badge of honor to make it so far?

I am INCREDIBLY PROUD of how far I made it in the show! It was such a positive experience, and these memories will last a lifetime! I’m just glad that audiences got to see a bit more of me. I really came out of my shell at the end.

Why do you think the Secret Six was so successful, and why you all were able to (at least for the most part) trust each other so well in the game?

To me the secret six was more of a “final six.” In my mind we were a delegation finding the next monarch of Nerdvana. Think of it as: Who do I want to be my captain? Who do I want to represent me to the public? Each of those 6 embodied qualities that I thought would make them a good “king” kindness, acceptance, public presence, leadership, ingenuity, etc. I think we all saw that in each other. This made it easier to relate to each other. On the subject of trust, I am a very trusting person, and sometimes it gets me in trouble, but I think in this case most of the six could just assume loyalty from me.

Are you more at peace with the cosplay challenge now than you were after it happened? Hooloovoo really did have some great costumes!

I was at peace with the cosplay challenge around episode 3. I knew that I did the best I could in that time. Also I cried, so I got rid of the stress around it. Man crying is good for you, what a healthy way of copping.

When the show aired I received so many positive comments about my costumes and that felt brilliant! I can’t wait to create more costumes this upcoming season! You can follow my progress on facebook at Lilatron Cosplay.

Let’s close this off with something fun: Given your clear love for Game of Thrones, what would be your dream Game of Thrones-themed Nerd War or Nerd-Off?

What a cool thing to think about! In a way, the show is a lot like Game of Thrones. It is a very social game, filled with political maneuvers, favors, and constant performance. Heck, the show is kind of like one big tourney. The nerd wars are like group melee and the nerd offs are like single combat. Each of us has a specialty, like trivia, and take it into battle. At the end of the tourney we name a champion, and we already have house sigils. All we are missing is a moment where we crown a fair maid the queen of love and beauty.

If I had to condense Game of Thrones to one nerd off, and if the producers are listening… flying on dragons would be pretty cool. Flying on live dragons answering questions about Tolkien, T.H. White, C.S. Lewis, Madeleine L’Engle, Marion Zimmer Bradley, etc. Make it happen.

You heard Lily: Someone find some live dragons for next season! If nothing else, maybe a few people can dress up in a giant dragon costume (Lily can design it!) while people answer questions about famous authors.

If you have missed some of our other “King of the Nerds” exit interviews from the finale, head over here to see what the winner Jonathan had to say, or here to see some parting words from Kaitlin. Also, you can sign up now if you want to score some other TV updates on all we cover via our CarterMatt Newsletter. (Photo: TBS.)

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